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Republican governors, eager for new revenue to ease budget strains, are dropping their longtime opposition to imposing sales taxes on online purchases, a significant political shift that could soon bring an end to tax-free sales on the Internet.
Conservative governors, joining their Democratic counterparts, have been making deals with online retail giant Amazon.com AMZN -0.97% to collect state sales taxes. The movement picked up an important ally when New Jersey Gov. Chris Christieówidely mentioned as a potential vice-presidential candidateórecently reached an agreement under which Amazon would collect sales taxes on his state's online purchases in exchange for locating distribution facilities there.
Mr. Christie called taxation of online sales "an important issue to all the nation's governors" and endorsed federal legislation giving all states taxing authority.